Even small changes can become big decisions when you’re running a business. Changing something as fundamental to your business as your telephone system can be particularly daunting. The wrong move can cost money, cause downtime, or produce results that leave you worse off than you were. Without adequate research, switching your phone system from traditional copper-based service to VoIP could certainly become one of those decisions. However, the features offered by the latest VoIP systems make a compelling case to go ahead and bite the bullet and make that change.
Is your business ready for VoIP?
Here are a few facts to help you determine whether the move to VoIP will be a good one for your business:
Is it time?
There are several signals that indicate it may be time to consider new technology for your office communications. Keeping costs down is vital and, when telecom expenses are higher than you would like, a VoIP system may be in your future. With a cloud-hosted VoIP system, there are no maintenance, update, or upgrade fees. New numbers and extensions can usually be added without service calls to add physical lines, making it simple and cost-effective.
How much can a company anticipate in savings? Businesses regularly see savings in the range of 40 percent over a legacy landline and in some cases savings may be upwards of 50 percent.
Where is everybody?
Another indicator may be an increase in the number of telecommuters in your company. With all the advancements in communications and Internet technology, the number of remote workers has gone through the roof.
With a VoIP system, businesses can connect all workers, whether they are in the same office, working remotely, or even out of the country. How is this accomplished? Employees are linked via a unified, centralized cloud-based platform that can be accessed from any mobile device, including tablets and smartphones.
Many VoIP plans include free domestic long distance
Traditional calling plans typically designate only a tiny radius as “local” and charge extra for any calls to locations outside of that circle. For service companies, realtors, and others who must regularly call customers who aren’t right next door, this can be an expensive situation.
However, many VoIP providers don’t charge for such calls or have unlimited long distance calling available in their packages. All domestic calls will be covered under the plan! There are usually competitive rates available for international calls as well.
VoIP frees you from being tied to an office phone
This feature is great for business people who normally travel during the day. It’s also excellent for companies that have outside staff. How it works is simple: You set up your account to seamlessly forward calls to cell phone or other numbers as needed. Customers still call into your main number as usual, but when a remote person’s extension is used, the system sends the call to wherever they happen to be.
VoIP plans are scalable and flexible
Many landline companies have time-dependent contracts, and changing them can incur hefty fees. This is fine for companies whose calling needs are the same year-in and year-out, but it’s a killer for businesses that experience large seasonal changes in call volume or number of employees. If your company is seasonal, it’s definitely a good idea to switch to VoIP. When you do, you’ll be able to adjust your service, add or remove extensions, and add or remove features with just a few clicks – and with no charges for changing the specifics of your plan.
VoIP plans allow you to select feature ala carte
Traditional telephone technology and plans often don’t offer features individually. Instead, they’re typically bundled together, with some bundles only available at higher service levels. This is a big problem if you only need one feature in a particular bundle – you may be forced to accept an entire expensive package just to get it.
This issue doesn’t occur with VoIP plans. Many plans, particularly with cloud-hosted VoIP serve, features are either included at no charge or you can select each feature individually, so you’re never stuck with a package that only has one feature that you’ll really use. This can result in significant savings for your business.
If any of these features or scenarios apply to your business, it’s worth considering a switch to VoIP. TEC’s TEC Flex cloud-hosted VoIP product or its IP Advantage premise-hosted service may be just the thing to future-proof your business. Contact us and let one of our experts assess your business communication needs today.